image from Pixabay.com
The modern era has moved past its need for cable and satellite. People nowadays rely on streaming services to get their latest movie or TV show fix, including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime TV, and vice versa. This goes for music as well. In fact, there’s a streaming service for everything.
But while online streaming avoids most of the problems that haunt current cable and satellite packages, it contains its own, fair share of problems. Many. Some of these issues may only pop up while traveling, and some of these issues may decide to rear their ugly heads when your ISP decides to throttle your Internet.
Fortunately, a VPN can enhance your online streaming experience, ridding you and your streaming services of these pesky issues. But first, let’s discuss what a VPN even is.
What a VPN Does
VPNs (virtual private networks) started their climb to prominence in the cybersecurity factor in the mid-2000s when people realized that companies, workplaces, and even other people were willing to track their every move through the Internet.
Today, VPNs are used for a plethora of things, from tightening up a device’s security to accessing content limited to certain regions. But how?
VPNs encrypt all of a user’s data, making sure this data is unreadable for the ISP, government, and vice versa. Along with encryption, VPNs hide the location of said user, allowing the user to manipulate services and sites into believing they’re in one country, despite them being on the other side of the world in reality.
Both of these uses can help enhance your streaming experience, so let’s go ahead and discuss the ways you can use a VPN to rid yourself of some inconveniences.
How VPNs Make Streaming Easier
Let’s start with perhaps the most prevalent issue of modern online streaming: geo-blocking. If you’re unaware of the practice, geo-blocking is the concept of restricting certain content to certain regions. For example, many Netflix original shows and movies are limited to only certain countries, such as the United States and the United Kingdom.
Geo-blocking causes more frustration than needed, which is why I recommend downloading a VPN to fix this issue if you are a victim of geo-blocking. With a VPN, you’re able to trick streaming services into believing you’re in your country of choice.
Simply connect your VPN to a server of your choice and boom—you’re in, able to watch whatever content you want. This has helped me a lot, so I recommend you keep this plan in mind for whenever you travel or vice versa.
Avoid ISP Throttling
Now, let’s talk about the second most annoying aspect of modern online streaming: ISPs. Your internet service provider, well, provides the Internet, but not necessarily well. Bickering with your ISP over the phone because of them throttling your Internet is a common trope—one we all experience—so it comes to no one’s surprise that the same thing happens with streaming.
Your ISP may decide to throttle your data if they feel you stream too much. VPNs thankfully help you avoid that by masking your data and routing your data through the VPN’s servers before your ISP’s servers, making them unable to throttle your data.
Ensure Safe Streaming
But not everything revolves around speeds or restricted content. Sometimes, you just want to make sure that you’re the safest you can be while streaming. After all, who knows what hacker or cybercriminal could be on your network or could have taken advantage of a security exploit in the streaming services you use?
VPNs were created with cybersecurity in mind, streaming convenience second. If you ever feel like you need a bit more security in your life when streaming, a VPN wouldn’t hurt to use. In fact, I tend to use one whenever possible, especially streaming, as again, you never know what threat lurks around the corner.
By #TurnOnVPN, a non-profit organization focusing on a free and unimpeded internet for all. TurnOnVPN takes part in numerous online events, aimed at promoting a safe, secure, and censor-free Internet.